In my last blog I wrote about the value of information in the health industry and how technology has improved their quality of work. In this blog I will write about information technology in the fast paced industry of food. These interesting progressions provide for a new working environment for staff.
Today’s customers are more demanding than ever: they want quicker service, higher quality and good prices. Information technology has helped companies reach these demands and provide better products and service. According to an article by foodtechie.com “For restaurants, the incorporation of technology can be seen in the use of drive thru technology, intelligent kiosks, digital and interactive advertisements and menu, wireless and Bluetooth technology, self-ordering systems, automated and kitchen systems”. These technologies allow the restaurants to be more efficient as they have better information and staff can do their roles quicker. It also improves their competiveness. Self ordering is also an up and coming development in technology. This is carried out through touch screens at the tables and sends the orders to the kitchen through Bluetooth ordering technology.
“E-payments and kiosks where customers can search for information about products, place and order, and pay with credit card or using the kiosk itself” is also available. Another popular development in restaurants is the introduction of waiters using handheld wireless ordering systems. There was an interesting case study carried out by Motorala focusing on this development. According to an article on EzineMark.com “The case study focuses on Sam’s Chowder House in the San Francisco bay area, a high volume seafood restaurant that seats about 280 people. According to the study, the restaurant achieved a return on investment on the hand-held devices in one month. That’s because check averages went up and table turnover times and labour costs went down.” This reveals the value of having such information technology for a restaurant. Waiters don’t have to take down orders with pen and paper anymore. They don’t have to go to the kitchen to drop in the order. The staff can focus on giving excellent service instead or rushing orders into the kitchen and after into the payment system. “Staff turnover rates have plummeted since the introduction of the handheld ordering devices as a result. Finally, these devices can also process credit cards, allowing servers to run customer checks while standing tableside, further improving turnover times and customer service”. These IT improvements are massively valuable to these businesses. It saves time, gives them information regarding their customers’ demands and enables them to be more efficient.
This is a clip explaining the wireless ordering system (sorry about the commentary’s annoying tone of voice though! ha)
References: Images: http://www.avfc.co.uk/javaImages/57/8a/0,,10265~11700823,00.jpg